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Customer Review

12 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Attractive system, shame about the details (ie. don't try to run a non-Windows OS), 17 Sept. 2009
This review is from: Acer Aspire One 751, 11.6-Inch HD LED Netbook, Intel Atom Z520, 1.22 GHz, 1 GB RAM, 160 GB, XP Home, up to 7 Hours Battery Life, Webcam, Wifi (Black) (Electronics)
I picked up one of these based on really good experiences with the smaller Acer Aspire One 150 netbooks (bought a heap for friends and family, they're just brilliant albeit with small keyboards and screens, deeply portable and very suitable for casual use).

I was very taken by the form factor - 11" display in a very small sleek case, 6-cell battery etc. The US keyboard layout is very nice, and the keyboard movement is quite ok.

When I took it home, however, reality started to bite.

The XP installation is loaded with what I assume is standard antivirus and antiphishing software that slows the (rather underpowered) system to a crawl. The touchpad button is stiff and not pleasant to use.

I figured I could sort out the Windows sluggishness by installing Ubuntu 9.04. But wait - why is the screen low-res now? It turns out that Acer have chosen to use a very very awful Intel graphics chipset called Poulsbo (GMA500) which is almost impossible for free software to support.

This is profoundly irritating, and while I've got a solution working (Google for "Poulsbo GMA500 ubuntu ppa" and look for recent threads on the topic) - it's certainly not fun, and quite possibly not very future proof.

Sad to say, my advice here is to avoid: Windows is just too sluggish on the hardware, and Linux is too hackish.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 15 Oct 2009 12:57:15 BDT
Last edited by the author on 15 Oct 2009 12:57:40 BDT
Lector says:
I don't think this is a good machine, but there's a very easy fix for that graphics problem (mine is running Ubuntu 9.04 quite happily, and MUCH faster than the default XP installation). Here's the fix:
=====================================
To install an updated graphics driver, add the following line at the end of /etc/apt/sources.list:

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/ubuntu-mobile/ppa/ubuntu jaunty main

then run the following commands in the terminal:

sudo apt-key adv --keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com --recv-keys C6598A30

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install xserver-xorg-video-psb psb-kernel-source

sudo shutdown -r now

If an update to a later version (such as an upgrade from 2.6.28-11 to 2.6.28-14) breaks the graphics driver on your 751h, continue booting to the desktop (select the Run one time session with low graphics option) then run the following commands in the terminal:

sudo apt-get remove psb-kernel-source

sudo apt-get install psb-kernel-source

sudo shutdown -r now
=============================================
Post install performance is a bit sluggish and can be fixed with a small edit to /etc/X11/xorg.conf. Open the file for editing (gksu gedit /etc/X11/xorg.conf ) and add these lines (under the "Device" section):

Section "Device"
Identifier "Configured Video Device"
Option "IgnoreACPI"
Option "AccelMethod" "exa"
Option "MigrationHeuristic" "greedy"
Option "NoDDC"
EndSection

Section "Monitor"
Identifier "Configured Monitor"
EndSection

Section "Screen"
Identifier "Default Screen"
Monitor "Configured Monitor"
Device "Configured Video Device"
EndSection

#Added for mouse pad
Section "InputDevice"
Identifier "Mouse0"
Driver "synaptics"
Option "Protocol" "auto"
Option "Device" "/dev/input/mouse0"
Option "ZAxisMapping" "4 5 6 7"
Option "CorePointer"
Option "HorizEdgeScroll" "1"
EndSection

Restart X (log off and back in).

==========================

Hope this helps!

Posted on 19 Nov 2009 10:46:39 GMT
Have you tried to get a refund for Windows XP you are not using? Apparently Amazon is quite good at processing a request like that.
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